Onsite check-in is open from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on the fifth floor of the Nest Climate Campus at the Javits Center. We recommend arriving early to allow plenty of time to pick up your credentials and to ensure you do not miss the start of the Leaders Summit programme.
Achieving SDG6 will unlock the human resources needed to achieve other global goals. Water is one of best investments the world can make to improve health & education, achieve global gender equality, create climate change resilience, and help end the cycle of poverty.
The UN Global Compact, UNDESA, the International Organization of Employers (IOE), the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and Accenture are reviewing private sector progress towards delivery of the SDGs. The report findings; a ‘Business SDG Stock Take’, will be released at the Leaders Summit. This session will share the findings of this ‘Business SDG Stock Take’, identify key actions needed to get back on track and launch a new call for ambitious corporate action in the areas of gender equality, climate action, living wage, SDG finance & investment and water resilience. Leading CEOs will discuss the situation, share their ambitious plans and inspire more action by more CEOs.
The converging crises of climate change, a deadly global pandemic, worsening social and economic inequality, unchecked corruption and the devastating consequences of the war in Ukraine have caused unprecedented disruption and global transformation. UN Secretary-General António Guterres recently warned that, “halfway to the deadline for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, we are leaving more than half the world behind.” This dramatic rise of interlinked global challenges is forcing business leaders to navigate new levels of uncertainty, propelling executives into broader leadership capacities both by business necessity and by rising societal expectations. Against this backdrop, how is the C-suite navigating these issues while keeping their sustainability commitments on track? Where does the responsibility for meeting these goals lie? And when and how are sustainability strategies integrated across functions and teams?
During this engaging conversation, presenters will focus on how ensuring a living wage for all workers benefits core operations, value chains, and the wider operating environment and enables businesses to better meet their human rights commitments. Expert organizations will lay the groundwork of what it means to pay a living wage and leading companies will discuss what this looks like in practice. You will leave the session with a blueprint of how your company can take ambitious action and advance living wage economies.
Businesses need to join forces in an all-hands-on-deck Acceleration Agenda to fast track climate action by focusing their efforts on deep decarbonization, reaching net-zero by 2050 at the latest. Organizations need to publish comprehensive transition plans and anchor their sustainability practices in a rights- and principles-based approach to ensure that their mitigation and adaptation measures do not deepen inequalities, but contribute to climate justice through a just transition. The breakout discussion will feature business leaders who are prioritizing emissions reductions and taking concrete actions to advance a just transition. Audience members will be invited to interact with the presenters to address some of their biggest challenges and opportunities as they work towards their just and inclusive net-zero plans.
As the stewards of trillions of dollars in corporate finance, Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) have a central role to play in ensuring that private capital flows to the SDGs and that companies make the necessary investments for the sustainability transition and can raise the necessary capital. Leading CFOs will reveal how they are preparing to make ambitious commitments and how they are advancing financing and capital allocation aligned with the SDGs on a daily basis. You will better understand how CFOs can turn ambitious commitments and well-articulated sustainability strategies into credible investments and can improve the impact and ambitions of SDG finance.
To achieve the outcomes of having a positive water impact in 100 basins, as stated by the Business Open Call to Accelerate Action on Water, we need more engagement from companies and from different stakeholders at the basin level. The session will present how Local Networks of the UNGC can play a vital role in engaging local companies and in helping to identify local collective action implementers and work with them on campaigns and advocacy. We will also hear from an implementation partner about the importance of having global and local support to boost collective action outcomes. The Second part of the session will focus on ways we can innovate on the technological and financial sides to allow better decision-making processes, impact tracking data, and funding alternatives to facilitate companies' engagement in collective actions.
The triple planetary crisis - climate change, nature and biodiversity loss, and pollution - is gathering strength and creating further inequities. Nature is declining at an unprecedented rate, with nearly 1 million species currently at risk of extinction due to human activities. Biodiversity loss ranks as one of the top three major risks to businesses. In the words of the Secretary-General, we need to urgently stop our self-defeating war on nature and align our economies with the new Global Biodiversity Framework, to ensure that life on Earth as we know it can continue. This is why future-proofing businesses by moving to nature-positive action and investments is as urgent as ever.
In this session, leading private sector and key organizations’ representatives will demonstrate the relevance of the intersecting climate-nature crisis to business, lay out how companies can start their nature-positive journey and showcase best practices to reverse nature and biodiversity loss.
Despite the recognition of equal pay for equal work as a basic human right, the gender pay gap persists worldwide. According to the World Economic Forum, at the current rate of progress, it will take another 135 years to achieve gender pay parity. Join gender champions for a lively discussion on international best practices to close the gender pay gap by 2030. Through a series of fireside chats, you will learn successful strategies on how governments and businesses have successfully lobbied and advocated for equal pay through legislation and within their organizations and how you can too.
Explore the importance of business integrity as a driver for impact across the SDG Calls to Action on living wage, climate change, water stewardship, gender equality and SDG investments; Help shape a global business integrity agenda based on discussions of common challenges, trends, innovative solutions and priorities in the field of governance and anti-corruption and explore how the business community can adopt a Collective Action approach to strengthen oversight, accountability and transparency in the ecosystem where companies operate, by joining forces with government, civil society, academia and international organizations.
Explore innovative approaches and solutions businesses can implement to advance the SDGs. Breakthrough innovation for the SDGs involves thinking beyond incremental improvements and embracing disruptive concepts that have the potential to reshape industries. By embracing disruptive ideas, leveraging technological advancements, and adopting a customer-centric approach, businesses can ensure that they have the greatest impact and create meaningful change. You will gain insights into cutting-edge solutions, discover emerging technologies, and witness the passion and creativity of young innovators who are actively contributing to the SDGs and driving positive change in diverse sectors.
Please find information here about all the Young Innovators who will be presenting.
The session will rationalize corporate human rights due diligence as it pertains to ‘risks to people’ and illuminate the outcomes for businesses. The panel will exchange insights into specific steps their companies have taken, lessons learned in implementing HRDD, and the influence HRDD processes have had up and down their value chains. The session aims to inspire company executives to move beyond commitment and compliance, towards acting to “know and show” that their organizations are respecting human rights, no matter the size of the business or its stage on the journey towards corporate sustainability.
At the halfway point, only 12% of the SDG targets are on track, progress on 50% is insufficient and more than 30% of the SDGs have stalled or gone into reverse. We must step up as Leaders and take the actions required to deliver a better future.
The Leaders Summit has presented the critical point we find ourselves in and the role required of businesses. This session will be a moderated discussion with next generation leaders. Looking back on the day to what has been discussed, young activists will come together and discuss their perspective on what actions need to be taken to deliver a better future.